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HR news, updates and tips to help manage your people.

Are your employees in the dark over sick pay?

A new survey from Direct Line Life Insurance has revealed that 2.5 million workers do not realise that they would face a reduced salary if they are unwell or unable to work. Many believed that on average they would receive full pay for three and half months. Are your employees aware of your policy on sick pay?

Absence policies are bespoke to each organisation, but this makes it even more important to make sure all your employees are aware of what the terms are. With National Sickie Day approaching on Monday 5th February, why not take the opportunity to review and communicate your absence policy with staff. The first Monday in February is the day when on average more employees call in sick than any other day according to national statistics.

The survey by Direct Line also showed that only 4% of Britons understand how much they would be paid when statutory sick pay applies. This is worrying when around 43% of the organisations surveyed reduce wages to statutory sick pay after the employee is absent for two weeks and 16% after just 4 days absence. Statutory sick pay can be received for up to 28 weeks and is currently £89.35 a week, which can be a significant reduction in the average wage. You can find out more about how much Statutory Sick Pay should be paid out by using the Government’s calculator. The same weekly rate applies to everyone, but the amount you must pay for each day absent depends on the number of ‘qualifying days’ (QDs) an employee works each week.

Some organisations also have a qualifying period of service before a level of sick pay is applied or conditions based around performance-related pay and attendance. Again, this raises the importance of informing staff regularly of your absence policy, conditions and rates, not only just when they start working for the organisation but also throughout their service at regular intervals. That way, everyone knows where they stand and there is less confusion and stress after the event.

Identifying absence trends early can also help discussions with the employee. It means an organisation can better support the employee overall, hopefully returning them to work quicker, which improves productivity, reduces costs for the employer and avoids stressful periods for the employee. If you need help tracking absence, speak to us. Our Staff Absence Management Software, SAM, automatically highlights any employees who hit triggers in your absence policy so you can take action quicker. It guides you through the process, alerting you at key points, reminding you of tasks and providing you with a suite of best practice documentation to use. It couldn’t be easier. Click here to find out more about SAM or give us a call to arrange a demo on 01924 827869.

Source of Statistics- https://www.thehrdirector.com/business-news/health-and-wellbeing/brits-sick-pay/

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